The Idea of the Day® launched in 2004 as a way to help small business owners keep up to date on opportunities, changes, and issues vital to them. The daily tip is sent via email each morning to subscribers as well as being posted on the homepage. Thereafter, the ideas reside in archives. Since its inception, there have been more than 6,500 unique tips for you.
I thought you’d be interested in some of the back story on Idea of the Day®, so I’ve interviewed myself.
Where do you get the ideas?
The ideas come from numerous sources. I’m on many email lists of government departments and agencies, such as the IRS, the SBA, the Department of Commerce, the NLRB, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the Department of Labor. The government sends out periodic newsletter, alerts, and other communications about changes and actions of note for small businesses.
I also hear from numerous public relations people around the country and the globe who share what their clients are doing. Some share news about new products or services that I think my readers want to know about. Others have surveys and reports of interest to small businesses.
And I read and hear about new things in newsletters, magazines, and the media as well as on social media. In this way I often find out about business and financial developments, pending legislation, trends, and new product ideas.
Finally, my husband and my assistant regularly find ideas for me and, on occasion, a reader passes on a tip to me that I share in my Idea of the Day®.
Do you repeat ideas?
I don’t usually use the same idea twice. However, some are necessarily repetitive, such as tax filing deadlines that recur on the same or similar dates each year and federal holidays and other celebratory dates (e.g., Super Bowl; St. Patrick’s Day). If I use the same idea, it’s to update information, such as postal rate increases.
Do you try all of the products you mention?
No. I don’t try all of the apps or other products and services mentioned in the ideas. I do verify that the companies offering them are legitimate. In all these years, I only had one reader complain about a product that turned out to be shady (I can’t remember the details now).
I’m not paid for publicizing any companies in my daily tips.
Do you ever make mistakes?
Of course; I’m human. But I try to be very careful with the daily ideas to verify the links and the sources. My assistant does a double check. Sometimes, however, links do break after an idea has been put into the queue for publication so that readers receive erroneous links; we then try to fix the problem on my homepage.
Do you take idea suggestions from readers?
Yes. I welcome any ideas that you may have and will gladly give you attribution (e.g., a mention that the idea was suggested by you, with a link to your website).
With your continued support, I hope to keep bringing you more helpful daily ideas for years to come. Let me hear from you at barbara @ bigideasforsmallbusiness [dot]com with idea suggestions as well as ways to improve my Idea of the Day®.